A Clinton police officer is getting a lot of praise -- and a lot of ribbing -- these days.
"Everybody else has been giving me a hard time about it, but, at that time, it wasn't a big deal to me," Officer Anthony Griffin said. "It's still not a big deal to me. I mean, it's part of the job."
On Monday, Officer Griffin and his partner were on a routine walk-through at North Clinton Elementary School.
It was lunchtime, and Tracy Bellow was eating a meal with his 7-year-old son, Chase.
"I just got lightheaded and was trying to gasp for breath, and I had to get out of the cafeteria and go find somebody," Bellow said.
Bellow ran to the bathroom, passing Officer Griffin on the way.
"I seen him walk in the bathroom so I followed him and noticed he was choking, and I did the Heimlich," the officer said.
The maneuver dislodged the food stuck in Bellow's throat, allowing him to breathe again.
"I was just very thankful that he was here and being in the right place at the right time," Bellow said. "If somebody wasn't around, I probably wouldn't be around now."
On Friday, Clinton Police Chief Rick Scarbrough honored Officer Griffin with the Lifesaving award, the first time he's been able to hand that out award since taking over as chief.
"(I'm) really proud of him for being there because we do encourage these officers to be in the schools as much as possible," Chief Scarbrough said. "We tell them everything they do every day indirectly saves lives and protects the public, and so when they an opportunity to actually save a life, it's really special."
Officer Griffin was back at North Clinton the very next day for a walk-through, where he was welcomed with applause and a song from some students.
Meanwhile, his fellow officers have, of course, been giving him grief over the attention.
After all, Officer Griffin is new to the force, still completing his training.
"They're saying, the new guy's getting all the awards or getting all the attention or, you know, just giving me a hard time 'cause I'm new," Officer Griffin said. "(The award) meant a lot to me, but I was just doing my job, so I know that every one of them would have done the same thing."